This article discusses a new iOS beta feature that allows you to unlock your iPhone using Face ID and an Apple Watch connected together, even if you’re wearing a face mask. Continue reading to find out how it works.
With the release of the iPhone X in November 2017, Apple launched its Face ID face recognition technology, which provides customers with an even easier way to unlock their phone than standard fingerprint recognition.
Apple’s biometric function has been hampered as a result of the now-ubiquitous use of face masks, forcing many users to input their passcode to unlock their smartphone in public places.
Fortunately, Apple has responded to this shift in our daily lives by releasing a new function that lets iPhone users who are wearing an Apple Watch to unlock their phone using Facial ID using a partial face scan while wearing a mask.
The procedure is identical to that used to unlock a Mac using an Apple Watch. When the user unlocks their Apple Watch, they will hear a haptic buzz and receive a notice on their Apple Watch indicating that the operation was completed. Keep in mind, though, that you can only use your Apple Watch to unlock your iPhone while wearing a mask – it won’t work for Apple Pay or App Store purchases.
You’ll need to make sure you’re running either a developer beta or the public betas of iOS 14.5 and watchOS 7.4 before you can use the new functionality. You’ll need the iPhone and Apple Watch profiles from Apple’s beta testing website, and once you’ve installed them, head to Settings -> General -> Software Upgrade on your iPhone to update. Install iOS 14.5 on your iPhone, then open the Watch app on your iPhone, press the My Watch tab at the bottom of the screen, then select General -> Software Update.
What you will need
- iPhone X or later with Face ID
- Apple Watch Series 3 or later
- iOS 14.5 or later installed on iPhone
- watchOS 7.4 or later installed on Apple Watch
The iOS 14.5 and watchOS 7.4 upgrades are now available to public beta testers and developers, with a general release scheduled for this spring.
How to set up/ unlock iPhone using Apple watch
- Open the settings app on the iPhone.
- Select face ID and Passcode.
- Enter the passcode of your iPhone.
- Toggle the switch next to Apple Watch to the green ON position. Scroll down to the section labeled “Unlock With Apple Watch.” (If the choice is greyed out, your Apple Watch’s watchOS version has to be updated.)
How to unlock your iPhone with Apple watch
To use your Apple Watch to unlock your iPhone, it must be close by, on your wrist, unlocked, and password-protected. If you haven’t already done so, open the Watch app on your iPhone, go to Passcode -> Turn Passcode On, and then enter the passcode you wish to use (you’ll have to confirm it twice).
When you try to unlock your iPhone using Apple Watch while wearing a mask for the first time, your iPhone will prompt you to enter your passcode. Once you’ve done that, unlocking your iPhone while wearing a mask will be quick and painless, with each successful unlock followed by a little haptic buzz on your wrist. If you remove your watch or the first time you set it up each day, you’ll have to re-enter your passcode.
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